Speaking to Joystiq, Activision noted that consumers will be given the option to skip such scenes, which it claims are not representative of the overall game. They'll also be preceded by explicit warnings about their "disturbing" nature. While we imagine most players will judge, discuss and react to the sequence within its context -- did you know that the plot tasks you with infiltrating a terrorist group? -- don't expect the mainstream media to handle the issue with equal consideration. Witness Mirror.co.uk's initial reaction: "Modern Warfare 2: Leaked level makes light of terrorist activities." Terrorists in my vidgame -- haha!
"The game includes a plot involving a mission carried out by a Russian villain who wants to trigger a global war," reads Activision's official statement, included in full after the break. "In order to defeat him, the player infiltrates his inner circle. The scene is designed to evoke the atrocities of terrorism." Whether or not it crosses a line in doing so is up for debate ... but don't tell Fox News that.
On the bright side, at least you can't shoot a pair of alien lesbians having sex on the luggage carousel. We'd never hear the end of it.